Longtime TJ Elementary School Teacher Patricia Schillig Dies

Longtime Thomas Jefferson Elementary School teacher Patricia Schillig died Tuesday after a seven-year fight with cancer.

Born Patricia Ryan Wright in Norfolk, VA on August 10, 1946.  She grew up in the town of Pulaski, Virginia and graduated from their high school in 1964.  She continued her education at Radford College, earning a bachelor in education in 1968. She then attended Oklahoma State University and  earned a master of education in 1972.  She taught creative dramatics in six different elementary schools in Roanoke, Virginia from 1968-1970.  She taught 3rd grade at Westside Elementary in Roanoke from 1970-1972, Margaret Beeks Elementary in Blacksburg from 1972-1980, Little Axe Elementary in Little Axe, Oklahoma from 1980-1984, and Thomas Jefferson Elementary in Falls Church from 1985-2008.

Patti gallantly fought ovarian cancer for over seven years, never once asking, “why me?”  She endured four major debulking operations, 55 radiation treatments, numerous chemotherapy treatments and four cancer immunotherapy trials at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland.  Patti traveled throughout the world with her husband Bill during summer breaks, and declared that she had a wonderful life. She is survived only by her husband, as a precursor cancer operation prevented any chance for children occurred in her early thirties. Patricia is interred at Columbia Gardens Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia as of her death on Oct. 23, 2018.

“Patti was the most decent person I ever have known.  She never talked ill of her acquaintances or friends.  She had a great smile that lit up a room.  She loved reading.  A kinder teacher could not be found.  She was my best friend.  I am missing her, and I will miss her forever.” – Billy

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